English majors and folks who write have a complicated relationship to grammar and punctuation. On the one hand, there is often an expectation on the part of the writer as well as those who know that this person is a writer, of a level of expertise that they will have accumulated--or that they are naturally gifted in the grammar and punctuation department.
At the same time, many folks who write and write a lot and often quite well, actually think they are terrible at grammar and punctuation. I will certainly admit to feeling that way for many years--and still have moments of existential doubt when I load a web page or send out an email to all faculty. And with good reason: one time I sent out an email that. had it's for its and a fellow faculty member emailed the entire faculty with one word: "its".
Which brings me to a larger point: there is a lot of shame around grammar and punctuation rules. And a conflation of other skills with correctness--like spelling, for instance. But folks who write a lot make a kind of peace with the imprecision and sometimes unuseful (made up word) adherence to correctness.
So as we enter into the back half of the semester, it's my hope to shift your relationship to grammar and punctuation--to make shift from fearing it to feeling empowered by it. Because owning your skills in this area really will bring your writing to the next (professional level). To begin, once you've taken and we've scored the editing test I gave you in class today, post your reaction to taking it.
USE THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS AS GUIDES:
We'll use this test, your answers, and what I've read of your writing so far to focus in on some work with grammar and punctuation that will build your confidence in using both--to not feel burdened by the fear of error but to feel emboldened to try different constructions and rhetorical moves with grammar and punctuation to do it with.